Written answers

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Department of Health

Electronic Cigarettes

Photo of Louise O'ReillyLouise O'Reilly (Dublin Fingal, Sinn Fein)
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466. To ask the Minister for Health the most up-to-date evidence and advice regarding e-cigarettes; when this will be reviewed; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3076/19]

Photo of Simon HarrisSimon Harris (Wicklow, Fine Gael)
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The Department of Health is aware of, and actively monitoring, publications by authoritative bodies internationally on the use of e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation tool. Analysis of emerging research on all products, and the findings of Healthy Ireland 2018 in relation to e-cigarette usage in Ireland, will continue to inform decisions around any future additional regulation in this area. 

My Department requested HIQA to undertake a Health Technology Assessment ('HTA') of the clinical and cost effectiveness of pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical smoking cessation products and services. The HTA was published in 2017.

In relation to e-cigarettes and vaping, although the HTA found that results for e-cigarettes are promising, there is currently a lack of evidence to recommend their use as a smoking cessation aid and at present no e-cigarette product is licensed as a medicinal product in Ireland. The safety of e-cigarettes is an evolving area of research; while potentially safer than smoking, evidence on its long-term safety has yet to be established. 


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